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Gregory McCammon | Gilford, County Down, Northern Ireland
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Ebenezer Free Presbyterian Church
Dunbarton Street
Gilford
County Down
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Zwingli’s ‘Plague Hymn’
SUNDAY, MARCH 29, 2020
Posted by: Ebenezer Free Presbyterian Church | more..
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Psalm 62:7. “‘In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God.”

The Swiss Reformer Huldrych Zwingli in time of plague knew the truth of this verse. He was away from Zurich when the Black Death broke out there in 1519. As soon as he heard he hurried back to his city to minister to the sick. He himself caught the disease and seemed likely to perish. Mercifully however he recovered. At that time he penned his famous “plague hymn.” Though lengthy thought I might share it with you. It is divided into 12 verses, the first 4 recount when the disease struck, the next 4 refer to when his life hung in the balance and the last 4 at his joy at regaining health.

1. Help me, O Lord,
My strength and rock;
Lo, at the door
I hear death’s knock.

2. Uplift shine arm,
Once pierced for me,
That conquered death.
And set me free.

3. Yet, if thy voice,
In life’s midday.
Recalls my soul,
Then I obey.

4. In faith and hope
Earth I resign.
Secure of heaven.
For I am Thine.

5. My pains increase;
Haste to console;
For fear and woe
Seize body and soul.

6. Death is at hand.
My senses fail.
My tongue is dumb;
Now, Christ, prevail.

7. Lo! Satan strains
To snatch his prey;
I feel his grasp;
Must I give way?

8. He harms me not,
I fear no loss,
For here I lie
Beneath thy cross.

9. My God! My Lord!
Healed by the hand.
Upon the earth
Once more I stand.

10. Let sin no more
Rule over me;
My mouth shall sing
Alone to thee.

11. Though now delayed,
My hour will come.
Involved, perchance.
In deeper gloom.

12. But, let it come;
With joy I’ll rise,
And bear my yoke
Straight to the skies.

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